cover image Wild Prey

Wild Prey

Brian Klingborg. Minotaur, $27.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-250-77907-6

Klingborg’s tense sequel to 2021’s Thief of Souls finds Insp. Lu Fei, home in Raven Valley, a township near Harbin, where he’s trying to advance his relationship with widow Yanyan. But Tan Meirong, a girl of 12 or 13, refuses to leave him alone until he agrees to look for her missing 15-year-old sister, Meixiang, who works at Wilson Fang’s virility-enhancing game restaurant in Harbin. Lu goes to Harbin, where he immediately senses something off at the restaurant. His superiors brush aside his concerns and then suspend him when he disobeys and returns to Fang’s business the evening before a shoot-out sends Fang into hiding. A government official later approaches Lu and offers him a deal: travel to Myanmar to locate Fang at an illegal animal breeding operation and the official will get answers about Meixiang’s whereabouts. Filled with plenty of close calls, the well-paced plot takes some unpredictable turns, though Lu’s behavior can be off-putting, as when he dismisses Yanyan’s grief for her dead husband and is rude to Meirong. This exciting outing shows a writer at ease with thriller conventions. Agent: Bob Diforio, D4EO Literary. (May)